Bishop Anthony B. Taylor announced Jan. 6 that all parishes are encouraged to take up a special collection during Masses Jan. 9-10 or Jan. 16-17 for victims of the recent storms and flooding.
The bishop has asked that the following letter be read at all Masses.
"A one-time special collection is being taken up in all the parishes in our diocese and across the country for the humanitarian and Church needs from the storms and flooding that began in December and are expected to continue this year. Your contributions will assist Catholic Charities USA, the official domestic relief agency of the U.S. Catholic Church, and its member agencies, including our own Catholic Charities of Arkansas, to respond to immediate emergency needs such as water, food, shelter and medical care and to the long-term recovery needs such as rebuilding homes.
"A portion of the collection will also be used by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops for the pastoral and reconstruction needs of the Church. People who are poor will have the greatest losses, and we know from experience that their best chance for recovery will require the charity of others. It is a blessing for them that the Catholic community, especially within our diocese, has a long and faithful tradition of responding to their needs with great generosity.
"In this Jubilee Year of Mercy, on behalf of those who need our help, I ask you to please be as generous as you can in contributing to this collection.
"Thank you for your support and I assure you and your family of my prayers. And let us join Pope Francis in his prayer for the victims of the severe weather and natural disasters, 'May the Lord give comfort to all these peoples and may fraternal solidarity aid them in their need.'"
Donations can also be mailed to Finance Office, Disaster Relief, Diocese of Little Rock, P.O. Box 7565, Little Rock, AR 72217-7565
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